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  1. RyanD

    WotC, DDI, 4E, and Hasbro: Some History

    After Vince Calouri was pushed out of Wizards of the Coast he was replaced by Chuck Heubner. Chuck basically had to manage Wizards on the downslope from the Pokemon salad days. Hasbro has been through many boom & bust cycles in the toy business and they have a standard response when it happens...
  2. RyanD

    4 Hours w/ RSD - Escapist Bonus Column

    As many of you know, the Escapist has recently run a 3-part series on the past, current and future of Dungeons & Dragons. The ENWorld coverage begins here. I contributed some insights to that column and wanted to take this opportunity to expand and clarify some of my thoughts on this topic...
  3. RyanD

    4 Hours w/RSD: Run Away!

    “The party is currently split ... in two different dimensions. Mei Ling is "mostly dead" and being dragged like a meat balloon through zero gravity tunnels by Marteen and Bog. Temper is very badly injured and "Dimissed" herself back to the Prime Material Plane a melee round before being turned...
  4. RyanD

    4 Hours w/RSD: Undermountain Update

    Undermountain Update Since my last column we have played 4 sessions of Undermountain and I am happy to give folks an update. If you’re unfamiliar with the Undermountain concept you can read more about it in my last column, but in summary it’s a stripped down version of Pathfinder optimized for...
  5. RyanD

    4 Hours w/RSD - Introducing Undermountain (Ryan Dancey)

    The past six columns I’ve been laying the groundwork to talk about my own personal home game and why I think it will be interesting to the people reading this column. I haven’t played in a tabletop RPG group since I stopped living full time in the Seattle area about 10 years ago. During the...
  6. RyanD

    4 hours w/ RSD: Get Some Feedback

    The bulk of this month’s column is going to talk about development choices and marketing for tabletop RPGs. There is an important part that relates to our objective of getting more fun out of the 4 hour game session, so I’ll lead with that and those of you uninterested in the business analysis...
  7. RyanD

    4 Hours w/ RSD - Let's Have a Flamewar!

    Lets Have a Flamewar! I have, from time to time, been accused of making comments designed to inflame passions and ignite debate. That may be true to some degree, but when it comes to the art of driving people crazy with terminology, I tip my hat to the people at Global Underwater Explorers...
  8. RyanD

    4 Hours w/ RSD - Take Note

    Notes for Every GM and Player A Call to Action for GMs! I have a couple of old 1st edition modules covered in badly obfuscated handwritten notes from my earliest days of playing. I can remember constantly having to improvise various things as we played because I couldn’t remember exactly what...
  9. RyanD

    4 Hours w/ RSD: Realtime

    Realtime and the Game When we were working on 3rd Edition, one of the questions that we thought a lot about was “how long do you play the game in one sitting”. Most of us remember marathon games that lasted so long nobody bothered to track the hours played. But we also know that lots of...
  10. RyanD

    4 Hours w/ RSD: Who Am I?

    Who Am I & How Did I Get Here? Greetings! It’s been a while since I’ve been an active member of the ENWorld community or actively involved with publishing tabletop RPGs so I may need to make a few introductions. Almost 20 years ago I created one of the first ecommerce businesses, RPG...
  11. RyanD

    4 Hours w/RSD: Who Is Sitting At Your Table

    Who Is Sitting At Your Table? This might seem like a simple question to answer. Usually, you play with a group of friends whom you’ve come to know quite well. Even if you find yourself in a hastily assembled game at a convention or store, you usually have a lot in common with the other folks you...
  12. RyanD

    Ryan Dancey on the Goals of the Open Gaming License

    The purpose of the OGL was to act as a force for change. In that sense I think it is an unquaified success. It changed the relationship of fans to publishers - any person with an idea could participate in the market if they wished. It changed the relationship of developers to publishers -...
  13. RyanD

    Thanks for Hosting!

    I really appreciate ENWorld support in hosting these discussions. I just don't have time anymore to deal with the routine list admin overhead. I suspect that with 4E coming, and WotC appearing likely to alter their licensing regimes that interest in these topics will increase. Having the...
  14. RyanD

    Ryan Dancey Answers to OGL questions

    In The Thread That Will Not Be Named, a couple of people asked questions I'd like to try to answer. Goblinoid Games asked: I have problems with OSRIC. I believe that some of the content in OSRIC is copyrightable, and that it has not been shared by WotC via the OGL. Specifically, I will...
  15. RyanD

    Review of Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay

    Following the thread of two weeks ago regarding "rules lite" RPGs, where the topic of the new Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay game was discussed, I had a chance to examine the product in detail and write my review, which appears at www.gamingreport.com. I suspect that many of you will find my...
  16. RyanD

    Things other than rulebooks

    Originally Posted by RyanD There are so many more valuable things that could be sold to players and GMs beyond new rules that I get greatly irritated by how many "rulebooks" I see in the marketplace. I thought this topic deserved its own thread. (Wow - two threads from me in one day. Feels...
  17. RyanD

    Sorry - I think the point was missed...

    Excellent and interesting thread about my comments on Mike Mearls' blog. Unfortunately, I think my point was missed. I'd like to clarify. Rather than being a specific critique of "rules lite" systems, my point was that the roleplaying game concept as a whole suffers from many problems that...
  18. RyanD

    ORIGINS Award Proposal: Revision

    After getting a lot of feedback on the section of my proposal involving the selection of the products to be included on the Final Ballot, I am making the following revision to improve the overall proposal: Selection of Products for the Final Ballot ------------------------------------------...
  19. RyanD

    Submitted for Your Consideration: Changes to ORIGINS Awards

    The following is a proposal I intend to submit to GAMA and the Academy for review. Following the widespread dissatisfaction with this year's ORIGINS Award process, I believe rapid, significant change is necessary to rebuild the stature and interest in the Awards that is required to make them...
  20. RyanD

    Ryan Dancey: Acquiring TSR

    In the winter of 1997, I traveled to Lake Geneva Wisconsin on a secret mission. In the late fall, rumors of TSR's impending bankruptcy had created an opportunity to made a bold gamble that the business could be saved by an infusion of capital or an acquisition with a larger partner. After a...
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